Monday, September 27, 2010

Egg Fried Rice

As I often say, I'm always watching cooking shows on TV. I love to watch and learn and try and experiment. I'm most particularly drawn to different types of cuisine with which I have the least amount of experience. Lately I've been watching The Cooking Channel like it's my job. I absolutely LOVE that they have so many new shows devoted to food from so many different countries and cultures. One of my new faves is Chinese Food Made Easy. I seriously want to try every single recipe! Well, even though I don't have a wok, I decided to try this one. It was SO quick and simple to make and it's absolutely delicious! The first time I made it, I brought some to my Dad, who is a huge fan of fried rice. He loved it! Then, with a few suggestions from my Jeanie, I added a few other ingredients to the recipe, and it's now one of my new favorite dishes. It's not exactly as I saw on the show, but it's how I make it, and I love it. If you like Chinese food, then you MUST try it.
I know you'll love it!

vegetable oil
1 small onion, chopped
1 cup uncooked jasmine rice
2 cups chicken broth
1 red bell pepper, roughly chopped
3 large eggs
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp grated fresh ginger root
2 scallions, chopped
1 vine ripened tomato, seeded and diced
a few glugs of soy sauce
a few glugs of toasted sesame oil

In a small pot with a lid, saute chopped onion in a small amount of oil until softened. Add uncooked rice and continue to saute for just a minute or so. Add chicken broth, give it a good stir, place the lid on top, and reduce the heat to low. Let it cook until the rice is tender and all the broth is absorbed, about 15 minutes. In the meantime , prep all of your other ingredients.
In a large nonstick skillet or wok, place the bell peppers and a little oil. Saute quickly over high heat until slightly softened, but still crisp tender. Push the peppers off to one side of the pan.
 Add beaten eggs. Keeping them separate from the peppers, stir to scramble. Once the eggs are done, you're ready to put it all together. Add the cooked rice and continue to stir. Add the garlic and ginger along with the tomato and the scallions. Finish the dish with soy sauce and sesame oil. Stir fry everything well combined. Serve immediately.

Once the rice has finished cooking, it really goes very quickly, so you should definitely have all of your other ingredients prepped before you start to assemble the dish.
The secret ingredient is the toasted sesame oil. Well, the soy sauce too, but more so the sesame oil. If I didn't have it, I'd probably choose to make something else. It's THAT important to dish. It's what gives it the authentic Chinese cuisine flavor.
If you'd like to add a little heat to the dish, add some chopped chilis to the pan as you saute the red bell peppers, or just sprinkle the dish with some crushed red pepper flakes.
This recipe can be easily adapted for vegetarians simply by using vegetable broth instead of chicken. If you're a vegetarian who chooses not to eat eggs, then by all means, omit them. It'll still be a wonderful dish!
You can find jasmine rice in any supermarket right next to any other kinds of rice, but feel free to use any long grain rice if it's what you have on hand.
For an extra added touch, sprinkle the final dish with toasted sesame seeds.

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